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Monday, March 17, 2014 at 9:08 am

Pair of young chefs see opportunity in Batavia for Asian cuisine, especially sushi

post by Howard Owens in batavia, business, restaurants, YUME Asian Bistro

It was Kevin Xaio's cousin who suggested the young chef open a restaurant in Batavia.

Xaio, who lived and worked in New York City, tried to find out all he could about Batavia and the local restaurant market, Xaio said.

"It's six hours," Xaio said, "I drive here more than 10 times. I check out everything. Other businesses, Applebee's, dine-in restaurants, how are they doing, and how is traffic, how is the casino. I check all and the past history and see that the people here are nice and I think with the traffic here we're going to have a nice business."

A little more than a week ago, Xaio, and his partner, Chris Huang, opened Yume Asian Bistro at 4140 Veterans Memorial Drive.

An article in The Batavian helped alert local sushi aficionados to Xaio's and Huang's plans and the business is off to a good start.

"It's amazing," said Xaio with a broad smile.

He smiles often when talking about his new business. And he's most pleased that many customers have already been back three times within a week, trying something different on the menu with each visit.

There are a few facts to correct from that original article, which was based on a conversation at a public meeting that neither Xaio nor Huang attended.

Xaio doesn't own any restaurants in NYC. Neither he nor Huang are planning to return to NYC (Huang moved here from New Jersey, not NYC). They've both taken up residence in Batavia and both work at the restaurant full-time with no plans to leave.

Xaio grew up in a small town in Missouri, near St. Louis, which is part of the reason he liked Batavia as a possible location for his dream restaurant. 

"The location is good and the people are nice," Xaio said. "That is the most important. It is country-sized. I'm from country-sized."

Xaio's father has been a chef for 30 years and Xaio started working in the kitchen at 16 years old and has been a chef now for 10 years.

When he talked with a cousin, who lives in Batavia, about his ambition to open his own restaurant, his cousin told him Batavia had only three Chinese restaurants, no other Asian cuisine and no sushi.

"At first, I didn't think sushi would be good for people here, but I hang around and I ask people, do you like sushi and they say yeah, I do, but I need to drive 30 or 35 minutes to Rochester or Buffalo to get it," Xaio said. "Then I think, I need a sushi bar here, and alcohol, that's what I think."

Yume doesn't have its liquor license yet, but the blue-lit bar in back has three wide, empty shelves, and it's looking thirsty for clear glass and amber and green bottles of whiskey, scotch, gin, vodka and other spirits.

Huang is the sushi chef. He's been preparing sushi for 10 years. He became a popular sushi chef in New Jersey, Xaio said.

"When Chris started in a restaurant there, it is low business, right, but after Chris there, it is high," Xaio said. "The business is growing because of Chris."

Huang's English is not as good as Xaio's, so he answers questions in just a few words.

He said people should eat sushi because it's healthy.

"It's good for the body," he said.

Huang's sushi speaks for itself. 

There is an art to making sushi. It's about blending flavors, colors, shapes and dimensions on plates that are as pleasing to the eye as to the palate.

Batavia resident Michael Robbins is one of those customers who has already returned at least three times since the restaurant opened. 

Part of the appeal is that the menu contains rolls he's never tried before, such as the marble roll and the Godzilla roll.

He has primarily come back, though, because of the flavor and freshness of the fish. He's also impressed by the presentation, he said.

"It's really all about taste, but it's nice that they put such detail in it, because to me, if they're putting out a great presentation, it shows a lot of care," Robbins said. "It shows they care a lot about what they're doing. That's the thing that impresses me is they care a lot about what they're doing. That's what the presentation means to me. 'We worked hard on this for you.' "

Robbins and his wife have regularly driven to Buffalo for sushi and they were excited that Yume was opening across from Walmart.

"We kept checking and checking and it opened, and my wife and I said 'Ok it's open. Let's go.' And it was really enjoyable experience."

The sushi hits another sweet spot for Robbins. It's affordable and Huang serves up hearty rolls with plenty of fish. Robbins is saving the expense of a trip to Buffalo, he said, and he's not paying as much for the same quality.

"It's a big lump of fish mixed with a lot of good ingredients and there's plenty of it," Robbins said. "When you buy a roll you want to be filled up after you pay for the roll. A lot of times when you buy a roll somewhere else and it's not packed with sushi, it's not going to fill you up."

Jeff McIntire brought his family into the bistro for the first time Friday night and his three children seemed as to be excited to be there as he was. There was Derek 12, Kayla 11, and Randy, 8.

Soon after the children were seated at a table, they headed over to the sushi bar and clambered up on three chairs where they could watch Huang and his assistants work their magic on gorgeous creations of fish, rice and vegetables. 

Derek and Randy are more the California Roll-type sushi diners, but Kayla has already expanded her options, McIntire said.

Asked if she loved sushi, Kayla's eyes got big, she grinned and we learned that sometimes the word "yes" contains more than three letters. 

A former Marine, McIntire was deployed in Japan a few times, but never tried sushi in its country of origin. It wasn't until he was stationed in California that he ate sushi for the first time.

He started, as many neophytes do, with the California Roll.

Sushi was first introduced in the United States in Los Angeles in the 1960s. Chef Ichiro Mashita, at the Tokyo Kaikan restaurant, is credited with developing the California Roll by trying to incorporate avocado into a roll. A California Roll is comprised of cucumber, crab meat and avocado (though there are variations).

It's become a popular dish in the United States, though scorned in Japan.

But it's a place to start, McIntire acknowledged, especially for his children. You can work your way up to raw fish.

When you know sushi, you know what good sushi is, Robbins said. He compared it to the kind of hamburger you get at a place like Fudrucker's to what you might expect from a drive-thru joint. One is a meal made from fresh, quality ingredients, and the other is just thrown together for quick consumption.

An ironic comparison since sushi is kind of the original fast food.

Sushi as we know it today was invented, most likely, by Hanaya Yohei near the end of Japan's Edo period (roughly the 1860s). He created a meal that could be made quickly with inexpensive ingredients and eaten by hand (no chopsticks required) by people on the go.

When the government outlawed sushi street vendors, the cooks moved indoors into restaurants and became chefs and sushi evolved into an art form.

Though sushi has become popular in this country -- seemingly passing the trend stage many years ago and skirting the edge of mainstream -- Americans often eat sushi all wrong according to some.

To understand how to eat sushi, it helps to understand what it is and how it's made.

The key ingredient is vinegared rice. It is Japanese rice mixed with a dressing of rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Sometimes a wrapper is used. The wrapper is usually a kind of seaweed that has been dried, compressed and rolled paper thin. 

We generally think of sushi as raw fish, and while that might be the heart of the sushi experience, main ingredients can also be a variety of cooked meats -- octopus, squid and shellfish are always cooked -- or vegetables. 

When you get your plate of sushi, it will likely contain a dab of wasabi (a green paste similar in taste to horseradish). There will also be an empty dish where you might pour a little soy sauce.

You may also receive a dish of pickled sliced ginger, which acts as a palate cleanser between bites, the way a wine connoisseur might use crackers between tastings.

For a visitor to Yume Asian Bistro on Thursday, one of the sushi chefs, Jerry Zhao, explained the dishes and how to eat them.

Starting with a type of sushi called nigirizushi -- an oblong, hand-pressed serving of rice and a cut of raw fish placed on top -- Zhao said there are a few options on how to eat it. In Japan, it would probably be eaten as presented, with no soy sauce, no added wasabi (the chef has already placed some wasabi under the fish).

It's traditional to use your fingers to pick up nigirizushi, but chopsticks are acceptable.

Americans, typically, will place some soy sauce in a dish and mix in a dash of wasabi, Zhao explained. Some might put a dab or three of wasabi on top of the fish.

What's more important than how you use wasabi, or whether you grab the serving with your fingers or chopsticks, is what you do next.

What you don't want to do is try to cut the fish or let the rice touch the soy sauce (the rice will soak up too much soy sauce, destroying the flavor of both the rice and the fish, and cause the packed rice to fall apart).

Rather, you turn the nigirizushi-fish-side first into the soy sauce. Just a dab will do it.

You then put the whole piece into your mouth, fish side on your tongue.

For a roll, you would likely not dip it in your wasabi-soy-sauce mix.

For traditionalists, they eat sushi as served, and it's chef's choice, not the diner's. In Japanese, "trust the chef" translates into "omakase." In some sushi bars, diners have no other choice.

At Yume Asian Bistro, of course, the choices are much more expansive. There is a menu loaded with an array of sushi choices, such as chirashi, sashimi, spicy maki, eel dragon roll, thunder roll, Mexican roll and naruto maki. Sushi can also be ordered a la carte.

While Huang runs the sushi bar, Xaio is in charge in the kitchen, which provides both additional Asian flavors to experience, but also gives the person not ready to try sushi meal options while the rest of their party may be in the mood for some raw yellowfin tuna or striped bass. 

Xaio's kitchen is well equipped with all-new restaurant-quality ovens, burners and grills and he has plenty of helping hands to aid in fast and accurate meal preparation.

Yume's kitchen menu includes teriyaki, hibachi, and tempura dishes. Entrees include pad thai, curries, salt and pepper shrimp, duck, and pineapple chicken. 

Xaio admits to being a little unsure yet what Batavia's diners would prefer on the kitchen menu, so he will run regular specials to find out what people like.

"I know how to cook a lot of stuff, but I don't know if people like it or lot," he said.

He's also brimming with ideas.

"I have so many things on my mind to put on the menu, but I can't do it all at once, so I try maybe (to) switch menus, a summer menu, maybe," Xaio said.

Everything that is served out of the kitchen is prepared with the same eye toward presentation as the sushi. Great care is taken to ensure dishes are as artful as they are flavorful.

A customer favorite already is Xaio's pineapple fried rice, which is rice, shrimp, chicken and bits of pineapple served in half a pineapple husk.

Xaio and Huang put a great deal of thought into designing the interior of their restaurant, as well. A spare, contemporary theme of cut rocks along the walls sets the tone, with touches of Asian art. The predominant feature is water flowing through two panes of thick glass near the entry.

The chairs and booths are covered in leather and Xaio said he picked seating with extra padding to ensure customers are comfortable.

The lighting is kept low so those who want a romantic atmosphere will find it at Yume. The light across the room is actually gradiated. More light near the bar, where people can socialize, less light along the far wall; seating in the back is arranged for couples.

"I feel when people are eating, they need a comfortable place," Xaio said. "Music, good food and a comfortable place."

It took a lot of work to get his dream restaurant open, but now that he's serving food to happy customers, Xaio is glad to see the effort paying off.

"We try (the) best we can do," Xaio said. "Seven months. That is long story. I was just trying to do things perfect."

So far, it seems the customers like Batavia's new Asian bistro and Robbins thinks more local residents need to try Yume, and they should try sushi.

"Life is about trying different things," Robbins said. "You have to try different things, right?  Why have the same old thing all the time. Like traveling around the world and going to different places, and it should be the same thing when you eat. You should try different things to see if you like it. You might surprise yourself."

Chris Huang

Kevin Xaio

Friday, March 14, 2014 at 10:22 am

Photo: Cleaning up water after break in sprinkler system line at former Lowe's building

This morning contractors working on the former Lowe's location, getting the remaining space ready for new retail stores, apparently forgot to turn the water off to the sprinkler system before deciding to disconnect a pipe. The pipe needed to be relocated to make room for a new entrance to the new store. Workers undid two bolts and whoosh! An explosion of water. Perhaps as much as 1,000 gallons spilled out before the water was shut off. The break caused the water flow alarm to go off resulting in a response from the Town of Batavia Fire Department. Volunteer firefighters grabbed squeegees and brooms and helped clear the water out from inside the building.

Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 5:44 pm

Downtown businesses that keep their sidewalks clear get a little recognition

post by Howard Owens in batavia, business, downtown

A few of these signs popped up along downtown streets today. A couple of the business owners who found them in front of their store fronts this morning didn't know who put them out.

They hare the handiwork of Brian Kemp, of T-Shirts Etc.

Kemp took on the project himself -- not through the BID or Vibrant Batavia -- because he thinks local business owners should be encouraged to keep the sidewalks in front of their establishments. The ones who do so should be rewarded.

"They don't realize you've got to be able to see the cement," Kemp said.

He only made a few signs, so he'll rotate them around tomorrow, making sure businesses that haven't received the recognition yet, but deserve it, will.

Bottom photo submitted by Jessica Budzinack. She wrote, "My husband Christopher Budzinack works at The City Church. He was so happy his hard work was recognized during this rough winter.

Monday, March 10, 2014 at 6:15 pm

Genesee County Chamber announces opposition to Seneca casino in Henrietta

post by Howard Owens in Batavia Downs, business, chamber of commerce

Press release:

The Genesee County Chamber of Commerce has joined the growing opposition to the expansion of casino gaming in Western New York.

The Chamber’s Board of Directors has unanimously passed a resolution opposing any new proposed casino in New York west of Route 14 and specifically the location of a new tax-free, Las Vegas-style casino in Monroe County owned and operated by the Seneca Nation.

The addition of another casino located in Western New York would over-saturate the regional gaming marketplace and would have negative impact on Batavia Downs Gaming and its operations. Batavia Downs Gaming is located in Genesee County and has shown to be an outstanding partner in the community and is directly and indirectly responsible for thousands of jobs in our region.

An additional casino in such proximity to Batavia Downs will greatly jeopardize the livelihoods of those thousands of individuals who rely on the continued operation and success of Batavia Downs Gaming. Not only would Batavia Downs Gaming be affected, but the addition of a full Las Vegas-style casino has shown to have a negative impact on surrounding restaurant, hotel and other hospitality businesses as well.

The Genesee County Chamber of Commerce has asked fellow business organizations in the region to join in opposition to expanding gaming in Monroe County and all other locations in New York west of Route 14.

Monday, March 10, 2014 at 1:59 pm

Sponsors and donations sought for "Get Fit Bowl-A-Thon" at Mancuso Bowling Center March 23

post by Billie Owens in announcements, business, YMCA

Press release:

The Coalition for Healthy Children and Families asks for your support for an afternoon of bowling and fun to support a healthy, active lifestyle and prevent childhood obesity. Individuals, businesses and organizations -- please consider sponsoring the "Get Fit Bowl-A-Thon" on Sunday, March 23, at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

There will be two bowling sessions: 12:30-2:30 p.m. or 3-5 p.m. The cost to bowl is $12 per person or $60 per lane (group of six). Included in the above costs are shoe rentals, food, and beverage. If you are interested in sponsoring a lane, the cost is $100 for one lane or $150 for two lanes.

There will also be raffles and a grand prize drawing for participants. If you’re interested in donating toward our raffles or sponsoring a lane, please contact Holly Sharpe via phone at 344-1664 or e-mail at hsharpe@glowymca.org

“Get Fit” is a 12-week healthy lifestyle program offered by the Coalition for Healthy Children and Families incorporating physical activity & nutrition education. The coalition consists of community organizations and medical professionals in Genesee County, including United Memorial Medical Center, YMCA of Genesee Area, Batavia Pediatrics (Dr. Lalit Jain), Cornell Cooperative Extension of Genesee County, City of Batavia Youth Bureau, and Genesee County Health Department. They are all committed to making a difference in the lives of local residents and families.

Donations and sponsors can be dropped off or mailed to:

YMCA-Batavia
Attn: Holly Sharpe
209 E. Main St.
Batavia, NY 14020

Friday, March 7, 2014 at 7:52 pm

Photo: As cold weather breaks, Dave's Ice Cream opens for the season

post by Howard Owens in batavia, business, Dave's Ice Cream, weather

It's gotta be some sort of sign that spring is near when Dave's starts selling ice cream.

Owner Debra Webster would have opened a week ago, but she couldn't even get the ice off the parking lot. Finally, the parking lot is clear and the doors are open.

Webster has been in the ice cream business for 28 years, starting at the location that is now Dave's when she was 16. Six months later, she was the manager (it was Brenden's then) and working full time even while attending high school.

In 1995, she bought her first ice cream shop, an Abbott's Frozen Custard franchise in Brockport, which she still owns. Eight years ago, she bought Brenden's and changed the name to Dave's.

Friday, March 7, 2014 at 5:55 pm

GCEDC board approves incentives for Liberty Pumps and Bank of Castile expansion projects

post by Howard Owens in bank of castile, batavia, bergen, business, GCEDC, liberty pumps

Press release:

The Board of Directors of the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) approved applications for two projects at its March 6, 2014, board meeting. 

The Bank of Castile/Tomkins Trust Company is purchasing a building located at 113-119 Main St. in the City of Batavia and plans to renovate the second floor (10,000 square feet) into a call center for its expanding operations because of limited space in its current location in the City of Batavia. The company also plans to maintain the first floor and continue renting space to current lessors. 

The company was approved for a sales tax exemption of approximately $53,600 and a property tax exemption of approximately $27,800 to expand its existing facility. The planned capital investment will total an estimated $1.5 million dollars and is projected to create two new jobs.

Tompkins Trust Company built a new 18,000-square-foot headquarters in the City of Batavia in 2004, investing more than $2.9 million dollars. The company had pledged to create 63 new jobs; as of 2012, it had created 74 jobs.

Liberty Pumps is planning a 100,000-square-foot expansion of its existing facility at Apple Tree Acres in Bergen, NY. The renovation will include new spaces for production, warehouse, research and development, as well as an office, auditorium and training center. An initial resolution for Liberty Pumps was approved to set a public hearing as the total amount of incentives exceeds $100,000. The capital investment for the expansion project is $9.8 million and will create 27 new jobs while retaining 124 employees at the facility.

In 2000 Liberty Pumps invested $3.7 million for the acquisition of the land and construction of a 60,000-square-foot manufacturing facility. It underwent another expansion project in 2008 which entailed the investment of an additional $4 million for the construction of a 64,000-square-foot addition to the existing facility.

“It’s great to see companies that our agency has assisted with in past, come back to us with plans to expand their operations and create even more jobs in our region,” said Wally Hinchey, GCEDC board chairman.

Friday, March 7, 2014 at 4:36 pm

GCEDC holds annual meeting at GCC

post by Howard Owens in business, GCEDC

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) held its annual meeting at Genesee Community College to unveil the organization’s 2013 annual report. During the meeting, Genesee Community College (GCC) was honored for its collaboration in the community as it received the Economic Development Partner of the Year Award from the GCEDC.

“Because of the strategic leadership of the public and private sectors in 2013, the economy of Genesee County remains strong and the business climate continues to remain positive,” said Wally Hinchey, chairman, GCEDC. “I am confident that the GCEDC, the County, and our municipal partners will continue to work together to make business attraction and expansion a priority for 2014, and am proud to recognize GCC as the GCEDC partner of the year.”

The college was recognized for its role in executing strong economic development and workforce programs for the region. In collaboration with the GCEDC and the Best Center, it has helped more than 80 students graduate with certificates in advanced manufacturing/nanotechnology and food processing technology. These graduates have found local employment in industries they would not have thought to pursue. GCC will continue partnering with the GCEDC by implementing new degree programs to support numerous businesses, industry training programs and attraction efforts, as well as the START-UP NY program run by the college.

The approximately 300 people in attendance also were provided an update on developments at the Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park (STAMP) in the Town of Alabama by Mark Peterson, president and CEO of the Greater Rochester Enterprise and Thomas Kucharski, president and CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Enterprise.  Both participated in meetings last month with representatives from the GCEDC and organized labor to advocate on behalf of STAMP with members and staff from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office and members of the New York State Senate and Assembly.

The state has listed the STAMP project as a top economic development priority and has released $5 million in funds to move the project forward, but still $33 million is needed to make the project shovel-ready lite. The project, which has the potential to create thousands of new jobs, has the support of labor unions and the business community from Buffalo and Rochester, along with senators and assembly members in the Finger Lakes and Western New York regions.

“Going into 2014, it is critical that we continue to sustain this year’s great achievements and reach the goals we have set for growth and development in the county,” said Steve Hyde, president and CEO of the GCEDC. “We will continue to ramp up our sales and marketing efforts for STAMP to attract large-scale semiconductor and high-tech companies to the site.”

Thursday, March 6, 2014 at 10:00 am

STAMP project generating some interest among high-tech manufacturers, Hyde tells legislators

post by Howard Owens in business, GCEDC, STAMP

There's plenty of reason to be optimistic about the future of the WNY STAMP project in Alabama, Steve Hyde told members of the County Legislature during the Ways and Means Committee meeting Tuesday.

While Genesee County Economic Development Center must still secure a total of $33 million in financing to make the proposed high-tech manufacturing park "shovel-ready lite," there is plenty of buzz about the project among site selectors.

STAMP will be one of only a couple of locations in the nation, if not in the world, that could provide a major manufacturer with both 500 acres of property and up to 500 megawatts of electricity, Hyde said.

One of the nation's leading site selectors was at a conference in Denver recently and told Hyde there may be a very big project in the pipeline and STAMP is in the running.

"He said they have a really monster project developing, that New York will certainly be on the radar, but they said that STAMP is the one site, and maybe the only site in New York, that could probably accomodate it," Hyde said. "We're excited. We hope that comes through, but it's still very, very early at this juncture."

Hyde also said the governor's office is working on landing a project that would be "about the size of Muller" -- the yogurt plant in the Genesee Valley Ag Park -- for STAMP, but that New York is among four states competing for the project.

"It's competitive, but we're in the hunt," Hyde said.

STAMP is Hyde's big dream -- with the potential for hundreds of millions in local investment and 10,000 jobs. He called it "a game changer for our community."

He made his remarks during GCEDC's annual review for the Ways and Means Committee.  GCEDC will hold it's annual meeting at noon Friday at the college.

GCEDC operates on a $1.3 million annual budget, with $597,975 coming from fees paid by businesses that receive GCEDC benefits, $480,000 from the Local Development Corporation (a nonprofit operated by GCEDC that also receives fees for projects) and $215,014 from county taxpayers.

That $215,000 in county funding is perpetually controversial, but Hyde said it's essential to keeping GCEDC operating.

"That county contribution is only about 17 percent of our budget, but it gives about 8.5 professionals work that we hope you think is of value," Hyde said. "It's very important."

In 2013, GCEDC closed 28 projects that resulted in 270 pledged jobs, $29.9 million in capital investments and $1.7 million in grants for business and infrastructure improvements.

The biggest win for GCEDC over the past two years has been the ag park, which has seen the creation of two Greek yogurt plants -- Alpina and Muller.

Alpina pledged 50 new jobs and has already created 47, plus 33 full-time temp jobs that fluctuate based on production needs (and sometimes turn into new full-time, permanent jobs).

PepsiCo. / Muller pledged 186 new jobs in the first three years and 145 have been created so far.

Nearly 50 percent of the new hires at the two plants were Genesee County residents, Hyde said.

Thursday, March 6, 2014 at 9:30 am

Unique financing scheme proposed to bring more electricity to Appletree Acres

post by Howard Owens in Appletree Acres, bergen, business, GCEDC, liberty pumps

It's going to take a good deal more electricity to power an expanded Liberty Pumps in Bergen and adding more transmission lines to Appletree Acres will cost a bit of money.

To help pay for it, Genesee County Economic Development Center is proposing a financing scheme known as a PIF -- PILOT Increment Financing.

Liberty Pumps already has an approved PILOT (Payment in Lieu of Taxes) for its expansion, and a PIF reallocates some of their PILOT payments toward infrastructure payments.

In this case, GCEDC is proposing a 50-percent PIF, meaning the taxing jurisdiction will get half of the PILOT payments and half will go toward a fund to pay for the additional power lines and poles.

The cost of the electricity project is estimated at $150,000.

The power expansion will benefit all of Appletree Acres, making it more attractive to potential businesses considering the park and Village of Bergen residents, said Mark Masse, VP of business development for GCEDC.

It will also mean ratepayers in the Village of Bergen -- which has its own power utility -- won't see a rate increase as a result of infrastructure upgrade.

Of the 10-year period of the PILOT/PIF, the county will receive nearly $80,000 in PILOT payments and $80,000 will go to the electricity project. For the county, the gain/loss of $80,000 is not currently either a budgeted expense or budgeted revenue.

For the Village of Bergen the split is $17,600, and for the Byron-Bergen School District, it's $287,850.

All three jurisdictions will need approve the PIF.

Masse will explain the project to the Byron-Bergen School Board tonight.

A PILOT is a mechanism to relieve a new or expanding business of some property tax burden on projects expected to create new jobs. The property is either owned or leased by the nonprofit GCEDC so there are no property taxes owed; the business then makes payments in lieu of those taxes during the PILOT period. The payments increase on a graduated scale over a 10-year period, usually started at 20 percent of the increase in assessed value.

A PIF, then, takes those payments and allocates at least a portion to a specific community project.

The County's Ways and Means Committee learned about the PIF plan for Appletree Acres on Wednesday, but was not yet asked to vote on the project.

Liberty Pumps is planning to add 100,000 square feet of manufacturing and office space.

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